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Latino Daily News

Thursday March 17, 2011

Investigators Say Fatal Shooting of Guatemalan Immigrant by LAPD Was Justified

The police commission in Los Angeles, has ruled that the fatal shooting of a Guatemalan immigrant by the LAPD was justified.

With a unanimous agreement, the commission decided that officer Frank Hernandez acted within department policy when he shot 37-year-old Manuel Jaminez Xum on September 5th. Xum died the next day.

The shooting outraged a number of people believing the situation should have been handled differently. It led to three days of protesting, and 20 being arrested. Carlos Montes of the Southern California Immigrant Coalition said, “Many people in the community saw that Jaminez was no serious threat to anyone. He was too drunk to walk and could barely stand and there are people who even said he didn’t have a weapon.”

But the LAPD Police Chief Charlie Beck and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa have defended Hernandez’s actions.

On Sept. 5th, police say Xum was drunk while riding his bike and threatening people. Hernandez claims Xum lunged at him, which forced him to shoot. Chief Beck says there was a knife recovered at the scene.

“The vast majority of the witnesses described the knife, described the actions. There’s a lot of angst about this in the community and a lot of misinformation,” Beck said.